Using Sources Video Lecture
I needed to change the pronoun from the original source so that the grammar made sense. But for now, just make sure that you put the author's last name in parentheses at the end of the sentence that has the borrowed words. So remember from previous courses you've learned that body paragraphs need to have these parts.
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This lesson is about using sources in your writing. Take a minute and look at this body paragraph from maybe an argument essay. You can pause the video if you need time to read it. In the previous course we learned that a body paragraph should have a topic sentence. It should have several supporting ideas, and it should have details and examples for each of the supporting ideas. This paragraph has all of that, and it uses transitions, so it’s a pretty well written body paragraph. But we’re gonna learn about something that will make it better, something that will make it more academic. Here’s the same paragraph only here I’ve added two quotations. These quotations are from other sources. The first one’s right here. And you see that it’s a detail that follows the first supporting idea in the paragraph. To use the quote, I blended it with my own words. These are my own words, and this part is the quoted part, the borrowed part, and I put quotation marks around the words to show that those are not my words. And then I have to also give credit to the source. Right here is the citation. The citation shows the author’s name. This is the last name of the author that wrote these words. My other source is down here. I used it for the third supporting idea, and again the quote is blended with my own words. Here are my own words. And here’s the quoted part. You might notice this is a little different. I put brackets around one word because I had to change the pronoun. I needed to change the pronoun from the original source so that the grammar made sense. If you change any words inside the quote, you have put brackets around them. Try not to do this very often, but occasionally you’ll find that you need to. And again, I have my citation with the author’s last name. Any time you borrow words or ideas from another source, you have to say where you got that from. Later, we’re going to learn some other ways that you can cite your sources. But for now, just make sure that you put the author’s last name in parentheses at the end of the sentence that has the borrowed words. So remember from previous courses you’ve learned that body paragraphs need to have these parts. They have a topic sentence. You should have three supporting ideas and a couple of details or examples for each support before you have your conclusion sentence or transition sentence. This is just the basic body paragraph. And what we’re doing now is we’re adding in quotations. Your quotations will go here. They served as details or examples to help support Your points. One thing to remember is that we use source material to support our ideas, not to make the ideas for us. So never use a quote as your topic sentence. Your topic sentence is always going to be your point. After you make your point, then you can use a source to help support you. Here’s that first sentence again that had the quote in it. I’m going to show you where this came from. This was the website where that quote came from. You see it’s the Pew Research Center. And on the website, you can see the author’s name. Take a minute to see if you can find it. There it is, and that was the name that was used in the citation. This is further down the page, and here’s where the sentence came from in the original source. This was the original sentence. You’ll notice that I didn’t use the whole sentence. I just used the parts that related to my essay. Here’s the other sentence from my paragraph where I quoted something. Remember, these are my words and this is the quoted part. Let’s look at where this came from. This was the website and look for the author’s name. So, remember that name Matchan that was in our citation. And then, if we looked further down the page, here’s where the sentence came from. This is the original source, and this is the exact sentence in that source. And you can see that I changed it, I changed this word here, I changed the word my to his, remember, because I needed the grammar to make sense. So take a look one more time at how I used it. Notice the last name of the author is at the end of the sentence. Here’s that paragraph again with the two quotes in it. Having these quotes makes my paragraph stronger. It makes it more academic. And it makes it more convincing to my reader. This is something you’re going to want to start doing in your academic essays. Here’s one more example. This is a body paragraph from a different essay. And again it follows an okay structure, but it’s not very academic because it doesn’t use sources. So, we want to add in a source or two. If you want, you can pause the video and think about what kind of source you might use, what kind of quotation you might add. And here it is with the quotations added. Again, I added two quotations. That just happens to be the same. There’s no rule about it. You could add the quote for all three supporting ideas. It really is up to the writer. And it just depends how strong your other points are. If your other points are strong, you don’t need as many quotes. But if you have kind of a weak support, you probably want to use a quotation to add to that to make it stronger. So again, I blended the quote with my own words. Part of the sentence is my own words, the other part is the quotation. And again, I have the citation at the end of the sentence. This is the author’s last name. And down here with have the second quote, so notice how it’s nicely blended with my own words. I’m making a point and I’m using words from another source to help support my point and this is the author’s last name. Remember, any time you borrow words from another source, you have to give your source. You have to cite the name of the author. And we’re going to look more about how you do that later. So that’s just an introduction to using sources in your writing. We’re going to learn more about it in this course. Then, of course, you’ll learn more about it in the next course which is about research.
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